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The Long Wait!

By: Bill Osborne
Date: 16/05/2001

Grimsby Town fans are waiting with anxiety for Wednesday night's clash between Portsmouth and Crystal Palace, hoping that Pompy will crush Palace and send them crashing to relegation into the second division.

Despite Grimsby's spirited performance against Birmingham last Saturday, they failed to secure the final point they needed to secure their place in the first division.

Manager Lennie Lawrence, said after the game that fate will decide Grimsby's future. However there are 5 ways that the Mariners can survive but Palace not being able to win both remaining matches looks the most likely outcome.

Speaking after Saturday's game Lawrence told the Grimsby Telegraph "Palace losing was more important than us getting a result here, strangely enough, if they'd have won or drawn, we'd be sweating. But I've felt since the West Brom game, or even since half-time against Sheffield United, that it's fate. It's written that we are in other people's hands."

"I've been involved in lots of these battles, but never one like this where you get to a points total and think you need one point, and the wait is endless."

If Grimsby win or draw against Fulham next Sunday they will not have to rely on other teams results but Lawrence would like to see it settled before then

"There's still other options because Palace have to beat Portsmouth and, even if they do, then both of them have to win their last game to get past us.

"We've got about five chances. If all the other things go against us we might need something against Fulham, but at least they can't break the record, which is something."

In the meantime, Grimsby fans wait nervously for the Wednesday night game with Portsmouth looking to have more support than they ever could have counted on.

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